Here is a recap of the stories that appeared last week at Science-Based Medicine, a multi-author skeptical blog that separates the science from the woo in medicine.
Cancer Treatment Centers of America and “naturopathic oncology” (David Gorski) CTCA combines state-of-the-art science-based medicine with pseudoscience like homeopathy, chiropractic, and acupuncture, as well as scientifically tested modalities that are not helpful. “Naturopathic oncology” is an ill-conceived “specialty” that is more likely to harm than to benefit patients.
Defending Isagenix: A Case Study in Flawed Thinking (Harriet Hall) A reasoned article criticizing a weight loss product generated 176 comments that completely ignored the points made in the article and consisted mainly of testimonials, logical fallacies, and ad hominem attacks such as “Dr. Harriet Hall is a refrigerator with a head.”
Cracking Down on Stem Cell Tourism (Steven Novella) Stem cell research holds great promise, but clinics around the world are prematurely offering treatments that have not been tested and may not be safe or effective. The International Society for Stem Cell Research has issued a statement urging caution.
The FDA for the Average SBM Consumer (Martin Lessem) A review of the history of the FDA, an evolving regulatory body that has tried to protect the public by ensuring that products are safe and effective. Through trial and error, it has learned to deal with death, unscrupulous marketing and outright contempt.
Professional Integrity for Sale? “Sure,” Says Medscape! (Kimball Atwood) Alternative providers like chiropractors and naturopaths have long used ethically questionable tactics and promoted bogus treatments just to build their practices and increase their income. Now Medscape is encouraging medical doctors to boost their income by teaming up with pharmaceutical companies, working with attorneys, becoming a media personality, etc.
Dedicated to Jake Crosby and Age of Autism… ( David Gorski) The efforts of Jake Crosby, Age of Autism, and AoA to discredit Dr. Gorski by reporting a bogus “conflict of interest” to his bosses at his university have failed. He links to a music video of “I’m Still Standing.”